“Power resides where men believe it resides. It's a trick, a shadow on a wall, and a very small man can cast a very large shadow.”
The Shooting Star; literally, the star of the battlefield, relying more on her own capabilities, but never forgetting her partner-in-crime, Alfredo.
The Gearmaster; the mechanism expert, utilizing her manmade ducks and towers to dominate the field with little effort.
The Physician; the formidable advocate, whose support and debuff capabilities greatly compliment her destructive power.
And finally, the Adept.
These four classes make up the Academic class. But somehow, it’s hard to see for many why Adepts are named that way, unlike the rest.
Adept; it is an adjective that is also a noun; it is a description, which is also a title. What makes them an “Adept”? What makes them “Adept”? To think, there are two variations of a question that is normally asked…
After reading Seiggy’s impressive Dark Physician guide, I was inspired by it, as well as the lack of Adept discussions going on around here in the Academic section, in creating this guide into the world of the Adept – a class that may just live up to her name.
This will be a very long guide, so tl;dr lovers, beware! Also, apologies for any errors and mistakes… would help if you guys point it out.
Contents (CTRL+F for the chapter of your choice for a quick search! Make sure to include letter/number)
I. Winter is Coming (Clearing up misconceptions)
II. Fire and Blood (Skill Mechanics and Info)
- A. Academic Tree
- B. Alchemist Tree
- C. Adept Tree
IV. Family, Duty, Honor (The Capabilities of the Adept)
V. Unbowed, Unbent, Unbroken (Equipment)
- A. Weapon and Armor Suffix
- B. Weapon/Armor set combination
- C. Accessories
- D. Weapon and Armor Potentials
- E. Heraldry
- F. Elem %, FD, or Crit?
- A. Burst Combo
- B. Class Synergy
- A. Foreword
- B. Ideal PvP Gears
- C. General PvP Basics and Terms for Adepts
- D. Skill Awareness and Tactics
IX. We Do Not Sow (Q&A and Personal Achievements)
I. Winter is Coming (Clearing up misconceptions)
With so many classes out there that prioritize damage, it became difficult to differentiate each class from one another. Somehow, that same issue has landed upon the poor Adept, to whom many see mainly as a “damager” in public nest parties.
Adepts have powerful skills indeed, but Elemental Lords also have powerful abilities of their own – Mercenaries do as well, and their Academic sisters, the Engineers, have their fair share of high damaging skills too. Even their counterparts, the Physicians, can be quite on par with their damage. Heck, each class is a capable damager as long as they have the skills to do it.
The idea of a damager is easily slapped onto an Adept. But what makes their “damager” portion different from the rest? And are they all about the damaging enemies, and nothing else?
Hopefully this guide can clear up some misconceptions regarding the matter of the Adept, especially when party play comes along.
II. Fire and Blood (Skill Mechanics and Info)
To start it off, let’s take a look at the main point for this guide – the skills of the Adept and her prior class advancements. I’ll be providing in-depth information for each skill, so apologies for the long descriptions – it may be worth the read though.
A. Academic Tree
Fires 3 shots at a very long range.
- Damage is very low for PvP, and can do good damage in PvE at higher levels. Its use in PvE is limited, but for PvP, it’s a useful kiting skill due to its extreme range and flinching capability – be wary as it leaves you open once you cast it. Unlike most of the PATK-oriented DPS Academic skills, this one can use MATK (since Adepts use a Kabala).
Knocks up an opponent with your weapon and shoots them in the air.
- A nice PvP skill, but one of the worst skills in PvE. Use it for PvP, as it’s neat for keeping up combos. It can also hit enemies in the air. The second hit has a nice SA break, which can be utilized for counters.
Fires a projectile below you while in the air.
- Very useful in PvP, as it can flinch enemies below you. Use it after an Aerial Evasion to provide a full effect. The skill can add jump distance, but not jump height. It also hastens drop time, which can be useful in both PvP and PvE as staying in the air for too long can cause some trouble.
Throws a fire bomb, dealing 3~4 hits of fire elemental damage.
- A usually underestimated skill; it’s an excellent DPS skill which can be amplified with Fire%, and the skill itself at level 16 (272%+12912) can do more damage than a level 9 (253%+2629) Stun Grenade. So, if you’re inclined to PvE, max it out, or at least get it to level 16. Despite the fact that it’s based from PATK, Adepts can still maintain a high amount of PATK so damage is not completely low.
- At level 60, level 16 Napalm Bomb (272%+12912) is outshone by level 11 Stun Grenade (305%+4411) if you do not have Fire%, but for level 50, it’s better for PvE regardless of Elem%. Just to note, it has a lower AoE capability than Stun Grenade, but can do maximum damage against large monsters.
- For PvP, level 16 Napalm Bomb is weaker than level 9 Stun Grenade, and its short AoE makes it even worse...
- To cast Napalm Bomb effectively, it’ll need to hit a target directly – it will also cause a pushback effect. To hit enemies farther away, best to aim at the ground in front of them as the AoE travels forward.
Throws a grenade that grants a chance to stun an opponent.
- A PvP inclined skill, must be maxed if you prefer PvP, even if the stun chance was nerfed greatly for the skill. Like Napalm Bomb, it’s underestimated since it‘s based from PATK, but can still do great damage. Its higher damage in PvP as well as its wider range proves its usefulness in PvP compared to Napalm Bomb. Now that 60 cap is here, Stun Grenade has much more uses, IMO.
Smothers a floor in wax, increasing MSPD for the caster and all allies within, while giving a chance for enemies to slip while inside the AoE.
- Popular Academic skil. To clear up a misconception among a few players, it does not reduce skill cooldown – just because it has the same buff animation as Spirit Boost doesn’t mean it can reduce cooldown. It can also be utilized mid-combos for PvP, and give you massive mobility and additional crowd control.
Pushes an enemy back – will also knock an enemy off a wall if near enough.
- Purely a PvP skill, which can be used for combos as well as for countering. Damage is very low in PvE – keep it at level 1 if you want to focus in PvP. If not, Academics can still manage PvP without it. Neat fact about this skill is that it ignores Super Armor and can push back the enemy even midway during the casting of an enemy skill. With this in mind, you can push back an enemy to get out of range from enemy attacks!
- A detailed video on how this skill works in countering can be seen here. Credits to Hinichii of DN NA for the tests!
Summons Alfredo – what else?
- Most do not get Alfredo because of its low damage, and the fact that it lacks skills unlike Engineers turns off many players. However, Alfredo’s usefulness comes with the fact that he can be used as a distraction, or to be frank, a meat shield. If you have spare points, you can get him – in fact, there’s a good chance you’ll have spare points so why not get him regardless? Better than getting maxed Bubble Bubble, don't you think?
Calls Alfredo beside you – what do you think it does besides that…?
- If you got Alfredo, get it, as it doesn’t require any skill points. It’s not really needed though, as Summon Alfredo cooldown was severely reduced in T4, making it nearly spammable. You can spare this one from your skill bar.
Fires a bubble that traps enemies, or buffs allies with a protective “barrier”.
- Its supportive capability is not really useful because of its low duration – plus, as an Adept, it is best to focus more on the offensive. Trap time remains the same in PvP regardless of level. It cannot trap large monsters, but it can trap certain bosses (i.e. the dragon follower group in Archbishop nest). Maxing it out for trap duration in PvE is not worth it.
B. Alchemist Tree
Launches a punch from the ground, knocking up enemies – can be followed with an Ice Punch by pressing left click.
- Your main skill, which can be improved with its EX version. Its high SA and low CD make it an extremely useful initiation or counter skill in PvP, and you can easily waste enemy recovery skills as well. Using a Magma Punch (CD) skill plate can reduce its cooldown to roughly 6 seconds, which can be matched with Ice Punch CD so they can always be casted after each other for PvE.
Punches in front with an Ice attack – can be used after Magma Punch or after a dodge. If used after a dodge, can be followed with a Magma Punch by pressing left click.
- Ice Punch can be improved with its EX version in the future. Its DPS capability is not bad for PvE, as it’s used together with Magma Punch most of the time. It staggers enemies in PvP if used, which can ensure a hit with Magma Punch provided that the enemy does not have any stagger-recovery skills up or available. It has a nice frontal range which might be useful for chasing down or catching fleeing enemies. Only downside to this skill is the horrible growth, and despite it getting its EX version, there are usually better skills to place points than this.
Summons many pillars around the caster, knocking up enemies and explodes a second later.
- It’s a neat offensive and defensive skill that can inflict massive damage. Its initial summoning knocks up enemies (useful for combos) and its secondary explosion can stagger them. It’s a must max for Adepts regardless of PvP or PvE, due to its high damage potential and circular AoE.
- It is your second most powerful PvE skill, just second to Ice Beam (not counting your ultimate of course). Yes, it's even more powerful than Magma Wave. The reason is explained below.
- The wall that is spawned around you is actually regarded as a summon and can take projectile hits and block movement. It obstructs view greatly even once it explodes. The damage shown in the description is actually per pillar, hence why it’s one of your strongest skills. The larger the enemy, the more pillars that can possibly hit, so try to cast it in the best position (particularly when the enemy is just in front of you) against large bosses. Maximum you can possibly hit would be around 3 pillars, provided that the boss is large enough (i.e. Fujinorth, Apocalypse, Manticore, etc.)
- When casted near a wall, the pillars line up with each other quite nicely. This can give more opportunities for more pillars to hit, in both PvP and PvE. For the pillars to pop up tightly with each other, cast this while facing the wall.
- It can be used with Injector for a neat little healing glitch... See Injector below.
Throws an ice bomb, leaving a trail of ice that damages enemies continuously and applies a debuff.
- In PvE, it is mostly used as a debuff skill, as it slows down enemy MSPD by 30%, as well as reducing their Ice resistance at the same amount for 6 seconds (8 seconds for level 7). It is mainly used as a damage amplifier especially for your ice skills, and is part of the burst combo for Adepts. In PvP, it’s a useful kiting skill, and its slow effect and damage trail make it useful in combos.
Summons an Ice Palm that attacks and staggers enemies.
- Ice Palm has great potential in damage for PvE when used effectively – each hit by the summon provides the maximum damage from its description, and it can hit up to roughly 7-8 times if it maintains range until its duration ends. It can even be boosted further with Icing Mass. As a summon, the skill will provide damage while you are free to move. It’s also invincible.
- In PvP, it’s great at interrupting enemies. Each hit provides a stagger, and the gap between hits is short enough to actually “lock” an enemy in place sometimes. It is the only softbanned skill for 1v1 PvP. It is however very vulnerable and can die quickly.
- A neat fact about this skill is that it does not generate threat when it hits an enemy.
Launches a devastating wave of magma in front of the caster – can be boosted with 3 or 5 bubbles.
- Not much explanation needed – it’s the most popular skill of Alchemists and has one of the most colossal ranges for a non-ultimate skill. It has been recently nerfed in PvP, but was boosted for PvE. Its quick animation makes it a good follow-up skill after a freeze from Ice Beam, besides Poison Break. Damage is still considerably high in PvP despite the nerf.
Summons a circular icicle field that damages enemies, and causes a special debuff at the end that greatly slows down enemies and burns them for a large amount of damage. Can be boosted with 3 or 5 bubbles.
- Part of your burst combo. Icicle Expression does extreme damage - in fact, it’s one of the only skills that can inflict the highest possible damage in the game, in a single hit. It also does multiple hits prior to the final hit, which does an ample amount of damage. It has a low casting time and inflicts an extreme slow+burn debuff by the end of the skill. Though weaker than Poison Pool in raw damage, it can be amplified with the help of Icing Mass for a 30% ice resist reduction. This will be your key skill in the burst combo, and the very reason why you might love your Adept. Since the ninja nerf on Icicle Expression, it has grown less useful though. But still, it's a staple skill.
- In PvP, it’s one of the most powerful ultimates that can wipe out teams in a single cast – use it wisely. Even if enemies manage to stay alive after the skill ends, the burn damage might finish them off, and the heavy slow will give you enough time to pummel them to death. Its quick animation makes it less easy for it to get interrupted midway.
Dashes forward with a huge injection and damages an enemy – pressing left click will activate its main damage. Heals you for a low amount.
- This can be followed with Hypnosis by pressing right click before the skill ends. Heal is very low at lower levels, but still useful nonetheless.
- One may actually have an idea of maxing this out or getting it up to level 6, as this skill grants higher damage to life conversion at higher levels. The Magma Wall + Injector trick would probably improve the heal more, and will regenerate your life extremely rapidly the more mobs around.
Throws a poison grenade.
- Mainly used for inflicting poison status. Note that Disease inflicts a special poison status that affects any boss, so try to use it always together with Poison Break in PvE.
Whirls around after a dodge, sucking in enemies and inflicting poison status.
- Holding dodge after casting this skill will allow for another dodge – useful for mobility. It can suck anyone into a nice pile, allowing for your skills to hit more enemies easier. Its suction effect has low SA breaking capability so be careful when using this as an initiator in PvP. Utilized best with combos and for mobility in the field.
Throws a huge poison bubble in front of you.
- Wide AoE and high SA break, but AoE is extremely frontal and its casting time is slow, so use it as a combo for PvP to ensure a hit. In PvE and PvP, damage is pretty impressive, but as an Adept, it's best to focus a bit more on our tree's skills. It's best used as a filler skill when your skills are on cooldown if left at level 1. Useful for mass poisoning to prepare Poison Break.
An ignite skill for poison-afflicted enemies that does severe damage – can be boosted with 3 or 5 bubbles.
- Perhaps, the only Poison skill that is worth increasing levels on as an Adept. It’s one of your strongest skills in PvP, so use it well. In PvE, the damage has been nerfed severely, but its low cooldown compensates the damage nerf. Poison Break has a high SA break ability for both PvP and PvE, and can sometimes interrupt boss attacks or stun them easily. It can cancel many boss attacks, most notably, Rotating Dragon Breath from Serpentra, if timed right
- Upcoming boost makes this a very powerful skill to max out now in both PvP and PvE.
Creates a pool of poison in front of you, locking down enemies and inflicting a high damaging poison status. Can be boosted with 3 or 5 bubbles.
- Casting time for this skill is slow, and it may be better off to skip this skill as Adepts won’t be using this much. AoE is mostly frontal and will leave you open in PvP, so it’s not really wise to use this over Icicle Expression, especially since Icicle Expression has a much better debuff. You are free to get this however, if you like the cutesy battle cry…
- Damage will be improved in the future which might even surpass Icicle Expression. Stay tuned for that.
Applies a buff to you and your party members that have varied effects depending on the number of bubbles – 2 bubbles increase Agi, Int, and Str, 4 bubbles adds an increased healing rate, and 6 bubbles adds a cooldown reduction.
- I’ve seen some Adepts not getting this skill, which is honestly a big mistake – it’s one of the best support skills and is an invaluable buff not only for the Adept, but the whole party as well. The stat bonuses is a big plus already, while the cooldown reduction and increased healing effect compliments it even more. For more information regarding this skill, you may take a look at Seiggy’s Dark Physician guide, where he dedicated a section there concerning how the stat boost for the skill works.
Summons a Slime that attacks enemies – requires bubbles to use. Depending on the number of bubbles, it has the capability of inflicting more types of attacks – 2 bubbles for fire, 4 bubbles for ice, and 6 bubbles for dark/poison.
- Like Ice Palm, Slime can provide great DPS as long as the slime itself would be able to attack continuously. It also does not generate threat/cause agro like Ice Palm.
Kills a slime in order to heal you and your allies gradually.
- Best to ignore this skill as it’s much better for Physicians. However, with the upcoming boost to this skill, it might be somewhat useful...
Adds Int and damage reduction by 1.5% per bubble you have stored.
- Oddly enough, this skill along with Hypnosis, despite being passive skills, use 3 skill points instead of 1. No harm in getting this skill, as the defense and the int bonus are pretty useful. If you believe you need the points, you may opt to skip this skill, but this is extremely useful not only for PvE but for PvP as well, due to the huge damage reduction (15% at 10 bubbles). Pair it up with Elemental and Chemical Bubble Charging, and you can tank as much damage in PvE as Elemental Lords can with their shields on (and even their damage reduction is lower than with a maxed bubble Eureka!). The Int bonus is a nice addition too.
Inflicts sleep status on an enemy – can be used after Injection or after being being flinched by pressing right click on your mouse.
- The duration has been nerfed to 2 seconds in PvP. This skill has a very short iframe, so use it well. The skill range is so short, so be sure to time this skill right especially in PvP. Useful for both PvP and PvE, though the sleep affects only a number of bosses in the game. Nonetheless, damage is average and the retreating effect is very useful.
Elemental/Chemical Bubble Charging
Doubles bubbles gained when using fire/ice or light/dark skills in your Alchemist tree.
- Elemental Bubble Charging also doubles bubble increase of Ice Beam and C2H5OH. Elemental Bubble Charging is a must for Adepts, but there’s no harm getting Chemical Bubble Charging as well since it only costs 1 skill point. It also hastens bubble gaining, which is useful for Eureka and preparing your bubble-enhanced skills.
C. Adept Tree
Throws an alcohol flask that inflicts a debuff that reduces elemental resistance and gives a chance for an enemy to miss for 15 seconds.
- I have honestly never found an enemy “missing” on me before in PvE or PvP – or at least, I’ve never noticed it. Either way, this skill is mainly used for the elemental resistance reduction, which makes it part of your burst combo. Max this out, of course.
Fires a beam of ice (…) that has a high chance of freezing.
- Massive damage, but has an extremely linear AoE that can easily miss. Ice Beam is your most powerful skill besides your ultimate, so save it, and aim it well – aiming it a bit from the left will make it easier to hit enemies. You can also “rotate” the Ice Beam if you have a high mouse sensitivity, which is useful for catching running enemies. As it freezes enemies, it is also part of your burst combo in PvE.
- In PvP, it can rip off half or three-fourths of an enemy’s health in just 1 cast, and the freeze followed with a Magma Wave or Poison Break will help finish them off. It doesn’t affect knocked down enemies, but it can hit “juggled” enemies. Will provide more facts on when to use this skill in PvP later on in the PvP section.
- Freeze chance is only 40%, but it's worth to note that it does around 10~ hits (CMIIW, will test it again soon) ensuring that at least 1 or 2, or even 3 of those hits will freeze an enemy. You can also use this ability to help with Ice Stacking, especially with Saleanas who only have Glacial Wave (Ice Shield doesn't freeze atm, as it's bugged) and the unreliable Glacial Spike to freeze enemies. Same goes with FU's using high level glacial spike.
Magma Punch EX
Improves Magma Punch, greatly increasing both its horizontal and vertical range and its damage.
- Should be added of course. Not much to say, except that this skill can hit really high – and when I say high, I mean it has a nice vertical reach. Only downside to this skill is that it obstructs view greatly, but it’s not like Magma Wave, Ice Palm, and Magma Wall does that already…
Ice Punch EX
Improves Ice Punch, extending horizontal range as well as an additional punch by pressing left click after the initial cast of ice punch. The secondary Ice Punch provides the additional damage.
- Due to Ice Punch's horrible growth, Ice Punch EX is not much of an improvement for PvE... but for PvP, this skill creates a lot more opportunities, as it is an extremely reliable initiation skill now. The second punch effect has a "pushback" effect causes a "pushback stagger" on standing enemies (meaning you didn't hit them with the first punch) and also causes wall bounces if an enemy is near enough and is in the air/staggered. It's also a good skill to catch opponents after aerial evading. Its instant cast, quick animation, and additional punch is a massive improvement for Adept pvp.
Magma Wall EX
Improves Magma Wall, extending frontal range and explosion range, and increasing the number of pillars summoned. Each pillar is also more compressed together, allowing for easier multiple hits.
Sadly, the skill lacks what most EX's do have - additional damage. However, it still provides an outstanding boost to the already powerful Magma Wall by increasing the number of pillars. It's most likely that bosses can get hit by up to 4 pillars now, as opposed to before.
III. Growing Strong (Skill Build)And here, I present to you, my current skill build for 60 cap – very reliable in both PvP and PvE. I didn't include the Adept tree as all skills there should automatically be maxed out or placed points on.
- Focused skills:
Napalm Bomb (16), Magma Punch (11), Magma Wall (11), Magma Wave (Maxed), Ice Palm (11), Poison Break (10).
Do note that this is already a PvE-inclined build, but can still manage very well in PvP.
Level 16 Napalm Bomb over level 11 Stun Grenade mainly due to the Fire element, which can be boosted with Fire%. Even though Stun Grenade is useful in PvP, the Napalm Bomb damage in PvE will completely outweight the loss of it. Stun Grenade is not really that powerful in PvP anyway.
Magma Punch is level 11, as it's a staple skill. Poison Break is maxed, mainly in line with the upcoming updates to Poison Break in the near future.
Ice Palm is level 11 because it's one of your highest damaging skills for PvE. It's near to useless for PvP thanks to its vulnerability, but the weight it gives in PvE is great enough to get it.
Alfredo is taken mainly because he is a useful meat shield.
Other skills are self-explanatory as to why they are maxed out.
So, why no additional points on Ice Punch, despite the EX improvement? The growth. It's just bad, and there are usually better skills to place those skill points in. At most, its greatest perk is its utility in PvP.
- Took all passive skills, level 5 C-ocktail, and level 1 Slime.
- Left all poison/light skills at level 1 for utility, except for Poison Break.
- Possible tweaks for a PvP inclined build:
Get Stun Grenade instead of Napalm Bomb, and get Force Out for the remaining points in your Academic tree. Remove all points from Ice Palm and place them into Magma Punch (max out) and Mixed infection (up to 6). Remove points from c-ocktail and slime and add to Ice Punch (to 6) and Mixed Infection (max out)
*Note: When I mean tweaks, I mean the following changes I have said above are for people who want to focus a bit more on one aspect, while at the same time still being able to play fairly in the other. You are free to use this build as a guide to creating your pure build though... Do note that the current build above is pretty much a pure PvE build already.
Q: Why get Alfredo for PvP/PvE? He has low damage, his AI is stupid, and wastes a skill slot.
A: He’s just so useful in both aspects. Instead of maxing out Bubble Bubble merely for PvE trap duration/ridiculous shield that has a very, very low duration, why not place those points on a utility skill where you have the option not to use it?
In PvE, he can attract agro, reducing chances of you being targeted by random mobs, and even the boss if you haven’t attacked it yet. Even though he does low damage, that damage will stack up in time as time passes, and you probably won’t notice that he’s done almost 100k+ damage during the whole boss fight, which is impressive for something you’re just leaving out in the open. He’s also very durable for a summon.
In PvP, he attracts attention from Tracking Arrows provided that he’s charging towards your opponent. His attacks can flinch, and can cause frustration especially in Ladder. Of course, you can’t use him on softban 1v1 PvP, but at least you can still use him in ladder.
Q: Why not remove Poison Charging and Mixed Infection and put the points on other skills for a pure PvE build?
A: Both skills are pretty useful for mass poison infection and preparing Poison Break, and Poison Charging is the key skill for mobility in Alchemists. Disease has a pretty low AoE to begin with anyway. Plus, where’s the fun if you can’t twirl around with Poison Charging or launch a Spirit Bomb like Goku onto a pile of enemies?
Q: Why not max out *insert poison/light skill here*?
A: It is better to focus on the elements in your tree rather than the other, especially since most of your fire/ice skills will be improved in the future with its EX versions.
Q: Why get Slime/C-ocktail?
A: See my above explanations in the second section of this guide. But to summarize, Slime has great potential in DPS and C-ocktail’s bonuses are too good to pass up.
Q: Which is better? Napalm Bomb or Stun Grenade?
A: Though I’ve posted the details on that one already, let me just summarize it.
Raw damage of a level 16 Napalm Bomb is much stronger than level 9 Stun Grenade. By level 60, you’ll be able to max out Stun Grenade use the growth on level 11, which then makes it stronger than Napalm Bomb in raw damage. However, the great thing about Napalm Bomb is that it can be enhanced with Fire%, unlike Stun Grenade.
If you build a lot of Fire% for your Adept, you’ll greatly benefit with this skill more than Stun Grenade in terms of damage. In terms of PvP effectiveness and utility, Stun Grenade comes into priority due to its low chance to stun and wider AoE. The skill isn’t that bad in doing damage either, so anyone is free to choose which they’ll find more comfortable with.
IV. Family, Duty, Honor (The Capabilities of the Adept)
So now that you’ve learned the skills, what now? After taking a look at them, it’s now easier to see that Adepts have an impressive skill layout… and somehow, they can fit into many roles. To make it clear, let’s compile and number them.
1. Burst Damager
Thanks to Icicle Expression’s massive damage capability, and the many skills that they have to amplify its damager further, there’s no question that Adepts are excellent for burst damage. Ice Beam, Poison Break, Magma Wave, and Magma Wall can be added in their array of burst skills too.
Since a lot of enemies are weak against Fire and Ice, they can easily prove their potential in dealing damage. In PvP, 1v1 matches end quickly when almost all of their skills hit, proving how powerful they really are in terms of bursting down their enemies.
2. Damage Amplifier
C2H5OH, Ice Beam, Icing Mass – these skills mostly benefit elemental users, but it can also help out for PATK based classes with Ice Beam's freeze damage amplification.
3. Support Buffer
C-ocktail is just darn good… what’s not to love about this skill? But of course, any Alchemist can support the party with this buff. And yes, this skill alone is enough to regard Adepts capable of supporting a party with a buff, considering that this skill has 3 effects in just 1 buff! It will give you added survivability, a cooldown reduction buff, and additional stats. But of course, there's also Wax that will give your party mates an added movement boost and Dispenser will give you and your party nice item buffs coupled with HP and MP recovery items.
4. AoE Specialist
In PvP, it’s easy to see the massive range that the Adepts skills can extend to. From behind walls to halfway across the Lost Temple map, they pose a large threat to anyone at an extremely long range with Magma Wave, Mixed Infection, Ice Beam and their grenade skills. Come close, and you might just be eating a Poison Break, Magma Wall, or even Icicle Expression, with these skills covering a pretty wide range around the tiny Adept.
5. Sustained Damager
Ice Palm and Slimes can add DPS in the party, all the while with you busy spamming your main attack skills, making killing a breeze. Alfredo will also help you, not to mention take some hits if he somehow gets the agro.
Now you’re thinking, jack-of-all trades, master of none. But that’s not entirely the case. Unlike those following this style of multi-purpose, Adepts are actually great in one thing that exceeds that of the rest – their burst damage. Do note, however, that the jack-of-all trades still applies. Your contribution in a party will be really restricted and replaceable by a lot of classes, but do not fret. Show them your damage, get your gears, and see that you truly are a useful member of a party.
In fact, the other roles they are deemed worthy off completely benefits their massive burst capability, turning them into a killing machine bent for destruction the world over. For people as tiny as them, it’s hard to think they’d turn up this way, but the fact that they can face many roles without fully removing a main role that they can provide is simply impressive.
And that’s why they are called the Adept – both a ranged and melee fighter, which can provide damage amplification and party support, that can also provide DPS and high burst damage on their own.
They have the ability to stick to the role of many in one class, and that’s why it’s fitting to call them an Adept, not because they can adapt to any situation, but they are adept at what they do – being multi-purpose, while still managing to focus on one great aspect, which is dealing one of the best possible burst damage in the game. But of course, as I said, be wary. You are replaceable. So ensure that you're not - in what way, would be your choice.
V. Unbowed, Unbent, Unbroken (Equipment)A. Weapon/Armor Suffix
Dual Intellect – provides best damage amplification for your attacks as it stacks with each other, with a neat stat bonus to boot. This is the most recommended.
Magic Power and Tent – mostly for party supportive purposes, as it helps non-elemental magic classes within your party. Tent is mostly effective on high magic def enemies, and less effective if otherwise.
Avoid single Intellect on combinations to prevent overwriting dual intellect debuff.
For armors (except gloves):
Intellect - A common choice, for the huge stat bonuses.
Wind – The Agi bonus from a whole Wind set will greatly help in attaining crit cap if you’re ever aiming for that. However, you’ll be lacking more Int compared to an Intellect set and will greatly deprive you of a large amount of MATK and MP. This can be easily solved with higher upgraded gears though, and a good choice of enhancement heraldries.
A good plan would be to have a mixed set of Intellect and Wind especially if you’re aiming for crit cap, but it requires some heavy calculations.
HP – You’re not really after the effect of the armor but the HP bonus. It’s a popular choice among most classes, including Adepts.
Iron Wall/Tent – I don’t recommend this suffix due to how PvE works in this game. You’ll probably end up wasting an Iron Wall proc if you have a clear idea of dodging enemy attacks. In compensation off PvP and ladder, it could be much greater than HP for defensive measures.
Will - For ladder and stat boosts.
B. Weapon/Armor Set combination
Honourable Tribe set - The standard set. Little FD, but with high raw stats, and some crit as well. A full set should be ensured. If you're the casual nesting type, this set is for you.
Great Ancestor set - The FD set. Only really useful if you can reach 50% FD (1300~). This would mean that you may possibly need some FD plates, or sacrifice a lot of raw stats for it.
Twisted Obsession - The Crit set. Similar to Great Ancestor, but more common and grants more crit instead of FD. Honestly, a so-so choice, IMO, since the set only comes with crit which can be outshone by the raw/balanced stats of the Honourable Tribe or the FD boost of Great Ancestor. Try this set out if you wish.
Green Dragon L-rank - this set is actually quite viable even at 60 cap (similarly as to how Sea Dragon Hardcore set was good for 50 nests and raids). Extremely high raw stats, but the downside is the low defensive stats for armors, which will cause some problems especially for DDN.
Skill Accessories - Lyrica
Necklace - Magma Wave
Earring - Poison Break
Rings - C-ocktail, Dispenser, Magma Wall, Ice Palm
Honourable Tribe/Great Ancestor accessories - useful for raw stats and FD.
Lyrica accessories - High raw stats, but skill accessories are still better. Just have to work on your luck though for the latter.
GDN L-rank accessories - For maximum raw stats, but more expensive than Lyrica accessories.
D. Weapon, Armor, and Accessory Potentials
For weapons and rings:
Atk, Matk, Crit – best possible combination, which will pump even your physical skills like Stun Grenade and Napalm Bomb. If you get this combination, even the stat increase won’t matter – you’re just plain lucky to get it.
Matk, Crit – second best, stat increase also doesn’t matter much since it’s a rare potential.
Agi, Int, Fire%, Ice% - Third best potential, which is primarily for stacking Elem% not only for one element, but for two. Only possible for weapons.
Agi, Int, Fire/Ice % - The general weapon choice, for focusing on single Elem% and for a limited budget, as they are very common potentials. Only possible for weapons.
Agi, Int, Matk – For boosting overall damage for all of your skills besides the Fire or Ice ones alone.
For armors and necklace/earrings:
Agi, Int, HP – Crit, MATK/MP, and survivability.
Int, Vit, HP – MATK/MP and more survivability. Useful for raids.
Wise, Magician – For obvious reasons.
Health, Life Vitality – For survivability. Academics are fragile classes, so this plate is a must.
Wind, Fatal – For critical. If you are not aiming for Crit, you may opt to replace these two with Shining/Tent heraldry, and vice versa.
Shining/Tent – For defensive purposes. Prioritize Shining over Tent if you can only choose one as Adepts have naturally high mdef.
Ultimate – Also for obvious reasons… Avoid this if you are not aiming for FD.
Energy – MP recovery. Adepts usually have MP related issues, and this is almost a necessity. It can be skipped hwoever, where you can use Shining or Tent heraldry instead.
3rd stats: Aim for Defense or Vit for raid nests, or MATK/Crit for normal nests.
Magma Punch (CD) – To reduce Magma Punch CD from 8 to roughly 6 seconds. Very useful for both PvP and PvE. Replaceable with Magma Wall (Damage).
Magma Wave (Damage) – A priority, as it is one of your most powerful skills.
Poison Break (Damage) – Mostly for PvP. Replaceable with Magma Wall (Damage).
Icicle Expression (Damage) – To acknowledge your role as a burst damager, you’ll have to focus on strengthening your most powerful skill. You can replace this if you want.
Magma Wall (Damage) – Mostly for PvE. Can be replaced with Poison Break (Damage) or Magma Punch (CD).
Wax (CD) - For quicker support, especially in nests requiring high mobility such as GDN.
Why no Ice Beam plate, you may ask? Because it only has a reduced CD option and it only lowers Ice Beam cooldown by as little as 3~4 seconds. Better to maximize your damage output instead.
Note: Since the additional heraldry slots have been released, I suggest filling in the slots with skill heraldry that you left out (possibly Magma Wall, Magma Punch, Wax, or Poison Break) as well as the enhancement heraldry you also left out (Shining/Tent/Ultimate, etc.)
F. Matk, Elem%, or FD?
Ultimately, it all boils down to complete preference, and what resources are available to you. It will still depend on how much you are willing to invest, so take a few steps back and plan well before deciding on anything.
First off, a substantial amount of crit is CRUCIAL for an Adept. As of now, the current crit cap is 33k. Aim for around 25~30k as much as you can. This is hopefully attainable with Wind (selected or full) armors, Intellect weapons, suffix 2 (when they come out), proper accessories, and if you're the hardcore type, 3rd stat Critical plates. Note that having crit capped is a massive bonus considering that your bursts will almost always have constant damage, unlike low crit where you're playing on luck for your ultimate to hit. Adepts mostly have single hit skills, and Icicle Expression's damage is highly dependent on the final hit as well, so critical is very crucial and almost a certain need.
The best combination possible is a combination of high Elem% coupled with maximum FD, but it requires an insane amount of investment as you will need to also get a substantial amount of crit, as well as upgrading your gears to compensate the possibly low MATK value you'll have. It is actually quite viable to go raw as of now, as attaining a fundamental amount of FD (around 1300) is quite difficult for 60 cap, especially with the lack of variety in level 60 gears.
Alternative and cheaper gears could include focusing on half FD (no 3rd stat FD plates) and Elem%, Elem% or MATK with Crit.
Going pure raw with GDN L-rank gears or Honourable Tribe gear might also be good, but be prepared as you'll need to have high enough raw MATK and Elem% to compensate what you lost from FD.
So, let's say you're choosing what Elem% to use. What do you pick, Fire or Ice?
Fire% will greatly affect the following skills:
Napalm Bomb (if you get it), Magma Punch, Magma Wall, Magma Wave, C2H5OH.
Ice%, on the other hand, will affect the following:
Ice Beam, Ice Punch, Ice Palm, Icing Mass. Icicle Expression.
Based from the skill layout on each element, it's safe to assume that:
Fire% = Overall DPS with balanced burst.
Ice% = Overall Burst with balanced DPS.
It will just depend on which you want to focus on. Personally, I prefer focusing on Ice for better bursts, as this is the specialty of Adepts after all. But balancing it out would be even better if you get lucky on weapon potentials and even possibly, L-rank ring potentials.
VI. Ours is the Fury (Making the best out of your Adept)A. Burst combo:
A common mistake I’ve seen with a lot of Adepts is not utilizing their amplification skills effectively not only to benefit themselves, but rather, for the whole party. As I said earlier, people have easily viewed Adepts as mere damagers, where spamming skills is only required – but that’s not the case for our Adept. Spamming skills will greatly reduce your damage efficiency and will limit your role as a burst damager to a mere skill-spamming damager.
To start off, there are three damage amplifying skills to take note of:
-30% Ice Resist. 6 sec duration at level 1, 8 secs duration at level 7
-12% Elemental Resistance, -14% Elemental Resistance if with skill ring. 15 sec duration
Freeze status (+50% damage amplification), 3 sec duration
To add, each -10% ice resist will increase freeze duration by .5 seconds – thus, Ice Beam will freeze for 4.5 seconds instead of the usual 3 seconds if used after Icing Mass.
The Adept’s most powerful damaging skills, provided that you followed my build, from strongest to stronger (I wouldn’t want to call these skills weak…) would be Icicle Expression, Magma Wave, and Magma Wall, not counting Ice Beam here as we consider it as a damage amplifier, but still, plenty powerful.
Since Icicle Expression and Ice Beam are Ice Elemental, it’ll be amplified further with the -30% ice resist debuff from Icing Mass.
So, generally, the combo should be as follows:
C2H5OH – Icing Mass – Ice Beam – Icicle Expression – Magma Wall - Magma Wave
C2H5OH should be cast before Icing Mass as Icing Mass has an extremely short duration.
Magma Wave was previously prior to Magma Wall, but I considered the overall firepower of Magma Wall and that skill rightfully deserved the spot after Icicle Expression to make it to the freeze time. However, utilizing this combo actually grants a pretty close chance of Magma Wave catching up to the freeze time, as Magma Wall has less delay time before you can cast another skill.
Since Icicle Expression isn't up most of the time, you may opt to directly use Magma Wave and Magma Wall for a small, yet worthy damaging burst.
On the occasion where Magma Wall can't hit (i.e. on top of Fujinorth's back in Archbishop Nest) then feel free to either skip or delay Magma Wall and utilize Magma Wave first.
Casting this succession of skills will provide the greatest possible damage output in the shortest amount of time - be prepared to see millions of damage popping from your screen if you have good enough gears! The freeze time is excellent for party members to start using their powerful skills as well.
B. Class Synergy:
So, now that you're prepared to go all out and deal your devastating bursts everywhere in the land of Lagendia, let us first see the team mates you will most certainly love, and perhaps even certainly love you. Below are the explanations on how classes will help you in your dungeon routines.
I did not include the obvious ones... And when I mean obvious, I mean Mercenaries and Cleric classes, as those classes can create an effective duo quite well with everyone, even Paladins thanks to Elemental Aura. Physicians and fellow Adepts naturally have skills that benefit themselves, so it's quite obvious that they are suitable duos for the Adept, so I did not include them as well. Also, C-ocktail is generally useful for all classes so I probably don't need to mention it too much unless it has a great impact.
1. Elemental Lord
You: The Elestra is your greatest friend. Massive ice resist reduction and ice stacking will greatly compliment your burst combo, as not only will it greatly amplify damage, it will also lengthen the freeze time long enough for almost all of your skills to hit during the burst. The Saleana, on the other hand, is not far behind to amplifying your damage too.
Him/Her: Adepts have their own fare share of freeze and ice resist reduction skills too, making ice stacking extremely easier for an Elestra. Plus, thanks to the Adept's C2H5OH, the resist reduction will greatly compliment your power, especially for Saleanas.
2. Force User
You: Beyond Time and Force Mirror are the two key skills to notice here. Force Mirror amplifies your damage, and Beyond Time will help you to get your burst skills off cooldown much quicker, meaning lots of burst opportunities for a single run. Another skill to watch out for is Glacial Spike, as it will allow for Ice Stacking. It's very unreliable though, compared to Glacial Wave or Ice Sphere. Their crowd control skills are a big plus especially to prepare yourself for your long burst combo.
Him/Her: For Majesties, C2H5OH will greatly benefit your dark skills, and even Smashers can get a bonus from this if they have maxed Triple Orbs. Adepts can also compliment the Smasher and the Majesty with freeze as well. Smashers get an even greater MATK bonus with C-ocktail buff too with their Arcane.
3. Sword Master
You: Egad, Sword Masters are awesome now?! Joking aside, the one thing we'll definitely love about a Sword Master is a maxed provoking Slam. With a skill ring for it, they can get up to a 40% damage amplification, which is an extremely heavy impact for your burst combo. Just as long as the Sword Master knows when to use the skill for your benefit, you'll definitely love to have him around quite a lot.
Him/Her: Well... not much actually besides freeze status. But still, Adepts are nice to have around if you want a quick bursting party, and your Provoking Slam will be the key skill for that. You'll definitely love the cooldown reduction of C-ocktail for more skill spams.
You: Yes, your Academic sister will certainly be lovable. Biochemical Missile and Ice Pump Tower provides elemental or ice resistance reduction, making them great partners for your Adept.
Him/Her: C2H5OH and freeze. C2H5OH slightly since some of the Engineers skills have elements.
You: Spirit Boost and crit buff of course! Spirit Boost can help you finish your bursts much quicker and even reduce cooldown to boot.
Him/Her: Like Sword Masters, nothing much... Except freeze and cooldown reduction from C-ocktail of course.
6. Bow Master
You: Bullseye, another amplification skill. Though not as strong as Sword Masters, their damage amplification is still on par. They can also give crit buffs for you too, which is a nice balance.
Him/Her: Again, not much except freeze and cooldown reduction.
VII. Hear me Roar! (PvP with the Adept)
Dragon Nest Player vs Player is definitely one of the most enjoyable and unique features that this game has to offer, thanks to its skill-based combat and combo/skill chaining reliance for all, if not, most classes.
For Adepts, PvP is a harsh setting. The main concern for Academic PvP, specifically Adept PvP, is the fact that we have few “insurance” skills, or skills to use when you’re particularly in trouble of getting combo’ed. We’re not like other female classes with a blink/dodge urgency escape that can be used both after a stagger or a continuous combo from an enemy. We are left only with an extremely high CD counter escape skill, as well as the ever-popular Aerial Recovery and Ground recovery skills. Add the fact that Academics have the lowest HP pool among all classes in Compensation On PvP, the title of the frailest class easily lands upon us. Even Physicians have Healing Shower (which has a relieve effect for status ailments, might I add) and Love Virus to back them up in terms of survivability.
But don’t fret. With this lack of survivability, in return we get immense power; power against both crowds and single enemies; power against almost all odds and situations; and, most especially, for us Adepts, power to wipe out our enemies as swiftly as possible.
Adepts or Alchemists in general are combo-reliant classes. We can probably do kiting and simply spam our ranged skills, but chaining them in combos can ensure hits, as most of the Alchemist’s attacks are not multi-hit, but rather, single hit, and those with multi-hit capabilities are either very hard to aim and/or has a low AoE compared to the others (i.e. Ice Beam, Icing Mass). That is why chaining skills and performing combos can cause the most amount of devastation against your enemies. A full blown combo with most, if not all of your most powerful skills can easily wipe any character, whether it is a Paladin with Elemental Aura prepared, or an Elemental Lord with a shield (though the latter may be quite difficult to combo…)
Unlike our Engineer counterparts where they have more advantage at range, we have a balanced output on both melee and ranged aspects of PvP. We can burst down foes from afar thanks to the large coverage of some, if not, most of our skills, while at the same time, have multiple ways to counter and defend ourselves at close range fights.
With all these in mind, it’s easy to deduce that the Adept in PvP is a risk. We finish our games fast; it’s either we kill them fast or we’re simply the ones who get killed quickly. Either way, this warning should be enough to serve those who might be planning to PvP. That is why we don’t study completely on how to do the most damage, but rather, how to counter and dodge opponent attacks. Mastering this will lead any Adept straight to victory. Skill awareness is also a big factor, to both yours and your opponent’s, which also applies to any other class out there. Being aware of a skills’ mechanics can go a long way, most particularly in using in combos, or dodging enemy skills to prevent damage.
The ideas I have here are all based from my experience and a bit of research (special thanks to anyone who may have indirectly contributed to what I have found…) so, beware, I WILL be dissecting a lot of factors and going in-depth with them in the following parts of this section.
B. Ideal PvP Gears
Compensation On – Skill Accessories (for heraldries, see the Heraldry section in Section V.)
Necklace: Ice Beam, Magma Wave
Earring : Poison Break
Rings: Wax, Magma Wall, Ice Punch, C2H5OH, Stun Grenade
Sadly, we Adepts are left out much on skill accessories. We have little choices on what to get, and most are usually just for more damage with little growth. Fret not, these accessories will still be of great help to us.
I chose Ice Beam over Magma Wave as there's better growth for Ice Beam as of now. However, at 60 cap, I recommend a Magma Wave necklace thanks to the huge growth at level 11.
Compensation Off – Equipment
Not much… Just stick to what you use for PvE. Be warned, as Adepts are generally at a disadvantage in compensation off as we are frail classes with low Defense and Magic Defense values (just unless you remedy it with 3rd stat heraldries or more HP) and we also use Element skills which can be weakened thanks to a Paladin’s Elemental Aura. If you were to build your character for compensation off, I suggest lots of Elem% on potentials and gears, as well as more survivability.
Ladder – Equipment
Focus on survivability, like Compensation off. Increase your Elem% as much as possible as this will come as your greatest advantage against everyone else. Skill accessories will provide lots of use here, especially ones with lots of Vitality bonuses. Consider getting a Knight/Restraint suffix combo on your weapons for easier play.
C. General PvP Basics and Terms for Adepts
1. Body State: Current position of a character. I would call it hit state like many others do, but I prefer body state as there are some states that naturally occur even when not hit.
Being aware of hit states can help you chain combos. Here are the following hit states that I’ve named myself. I can’t provide pictures here, but I will describe each state as much as I can.
Stand – All skills can hit standing enemies. Enemies are free to use attack skills.
Knockdown – Simply on the floor, unmoving. Certain skills can miss while an enemy is knocked down. Also beware of ground recovery which provides an invincibility frame for an enemy.
Air – Jumping, after aerial recovery, or during an aerial attack/ability.
Flinch – slight action restriction, very short. Counter or urgent recovery skills can be used during a flinch.
Stagger – massive action restriction, can cause a knockdown when followed with any skill or attack. Like Flinch, counter or urgent recovery skills can be used during a stagger.
Knockback - even greater action restriction than stagger. Can't cause a knockdown when followed by a skill or attack, but provides a lot of time to use initiation skills without the threat of dodging (it is basically a push-backed, silenced standing state). Urgent recovery skills can only be used during this state.
Bounce – Enemy is spinning in the air, usually seen when attacked by a knock up ability or attack. Can be chained with almost any skill, as it allows more time for casting.
Juggle – Enemy is having a seizure on the ground. No, seriously. Just twitching, usually from enemy attacks while knocked down but is not lifted into the air. Continuous chaining can occur, but requires fast casting abilities or attacks. Any delay can stop the following chain.
Block/Parry/Evade – Pertained to Sword Masters, Clerics, or Tempests. For Parry and Block, after the block they are completely invulnerable to any other attacks for about half a second before expending a block again if they are hit again. Can interrupt skills when autocast, so it can be used to everyone’s advantage. Be careful of counter skills after a block or parry though. For Evade, AFAIK this does not provide half-second invulnerability like Block or Parry does, but it can interrupt movement when auto cast. Feel free to correct me if I’m wrong for any Tempest users out there.
2. Chaining: Literally “chaining” or connecting skills one after another to perform a combo. Can probably be intertwined with combos as chaining is the building block for combos.
Not all skills can be chained with each other, especially for Adepts. A misuse of a single skill can let a character recover from a knockdown by simple rolling away, without the need of using a recovery skill.
Sadly, it’s very hard to explain this, or rather… I’m just plain lazy. Most of the chaining can be learned by simply playing PvP a lot, or watching PvP videos. I suggest the latter to learn more about it.
3. Countering: Utilizing your own skills against enemies attempting to attack you to cancel enemy skills or lessen the effectiveness of enemy attacks.
As I said earlier, countering is one of the most important factors to consider when PvP’ing as an Adept. Luckily, we have a lot of skills in line that can help us with this one, especially as a class than can get up close and personal as we can get.
Skills to be aware of:
Magma Punch - high SA and instant knock-up effect, low CD
Ice Punch - wide range, instant cast, double attack, low CD.
Poison Charging - slight invincibility frame, suction effect
Magma Wall - wide, encompassing AoE with knock-up and/or stagger effect
Air Shot - knock up effect, stagger effect, quick cast
Force Out - Push effect
Hypnosis - slightly long sleep effect
Wax – can cause slips, prevents enemies from closing in
4. Crowd Control: restricts enemy actions/movement, or used to your advantage to avoid enemy actions and movement.
We don’t have silence, but we do have skills that we can use to either prep your enemies for a combo, or to be utilized as a counter measure against those wishing to duke it out against you on close range.
Skills to be aware of:
Wax – Chance to slip, increase MSPD for kiting and avoiding attacks
Bubble Bubble – holds enemies for 2 seconds, will give you enough time to chain long casting skills such as Mixed Infection or Ice Beam, or to prepare a combo.
Hypnosis – causes a “Stun” effect that prevents any actions
Stun Grenade – stuns enemies, preventing any actions
Icing Mass – slows down enemies, reduces ice resist
5. Recovery: Recovering from knockdowns or staggers
This is usually a common mistake for a lot of Academics, especially new to PvP. As fragile characters with only a few recovery skills, Aerial Evasion, Circle Bomb and Hypnosis must be used very carefully.
Know that Hypnosis has a very short range, and using this skill out of frantic panicking can be a big waste (and even I admit that up until now, I usually waste Hypnosis).
Aerial evasion only has a slight invincibility frame, and if you are caught by an enemy, you’re in for a load of punishment, so I suggest using an aerial normal attack (which lifts you up a bit) followed with an Air Bomb (to possibly interrupt following enemy attacks or cause a distracting flinch, as well as pushback enemies [Thanks PH_Tapacake]).
Circle Bomb ordinarily causes a knockback, but the aftermath of this skill can be set for enemy counters. Be careful when using it, and roll if you think you may not need to use it.
When recovery is out of the question, the only hope you have is through rolling and simply standing up. Rolling can be very risky, but it can help avoid attacks, and CMIIW, has a very short iframe as well. Standing up also has a very short iframe.
D. Skill Awareness and Tactics
This is an important factor not only for Adepts, but for every class. Skill awareness includes pretty much everything, such as recovery/dodge skill cooldowns upon use for combo preparation or “catching”, skill casting mechanics that can possibly be countered or dodged, or the employment of tactics within a series of skills by the enemy to put you at a disadvantage. This may sound complicated, but in the long run, this is what usually makes players shine in the battlefield. In PvP, it’s not just about brute strength (unless a character is indeed just extremely overpowered) but rather, about forming strategies and tricks.
PvP is a mind game – don’t let people fool you to fool yourself; you must be the one to fool others to fool themselves.
This can never be explained in line with actual PvP , as there are too many scenarios to take in and consider. However, there are some terms to take note of when skill awareness is in the picture.
Usually done through intense, careful kiting, baiting is particularly luring an enemy to use a skill for them to waste it. A common tactic is to bait a dodge and later follow up with a quick casting, ranged skill that will be able to catch an opponent with their dodge skill unavailable. Other, more risky ones, include baiting main, damaging attack skills, but is very rewarding in the end.
Adepts are pretty good at baiting dodge skills thanks to the many grenade skills in our ****nal, allowing for easy, sure hits with Magma Wave, Poison Break, and Ice Beam. Ice Palm, slimes, and even Alfredo also have a nifty knack of baiting dodge skills without you doing anything manually.
There are two parts in catching – ground catching (an enemy standing up, using or not using an ability) or aerial catching (after an Aerial Evasion, during a jump, or during an aerial attack).
Ground catching involves being aware of what skills you have that can help you either knockdown or knock up an enemy to follow a combo, or waste a recovery. In terms of the Adept, we are actually very similar to Mercenaries in catching strength, as most of our skills can either provide a stagger or a knockdown. Catching enemies on the ground is really no sweat. However, always be aware of the SA characters have as they’re casting skills. Make sure to know what skills can interrupt which.
For aerial catching, we actually have a few skills at hand that can be used very well. Air Shot can catch opponents when they use Aerial Recovery after being hit by initial hit. Poison Charging’s multi-hitting, iframe, and AoE can also catch enemies quite easily after Aerial Recovery. Thanks to the EX version, Magma Punch is provided with a much greater vertical range, which can be used to catch opponents in the air. Magma Wall also has a very nice vertical range too. Magma Wave, despite being a ground skill, can indeed catch enemies in the air. Mixed Infection can hit enemies currently mid-air. Force Out can interrupt aerial attacks (see the video I linked in the skills section of this guide for Force Out for more info). Aerial catching is very useful as it wastes Aerial recovery very well, and will allow you to further continue your combos.
Keepur distuns! Even though Adepts have a lot of melee skills, keeping distance can be especially useful against characters that are very dangerous up close, such as Mercenaries or Paladins. Adepts have great kiting ability thanks to Wax, and the many grenade skills we have in our ****nal. Kiting doesn't just involve running, it also involves damaging an enemy, while doing your best to keep out of range. It may be annoying, but in the end, it's a big factor to winning games, especially in ladder.
As simple as it may sound to anyone – oh wait, it really IS simple. Dodging and utilizing iframes (well, we only have two iframes for offensive skills… and that’s Circle Bomb and Hypnosis btw) is also another important key to victory. Most common mistake of all time is wasting a dodge merely to provide some distance between you and your opponent, or using a dodge to close in on an opponent. I’m not saying the latter is a bad thing, but rather, you charge while an opponent is ready to counter you, or is not even worth charging (like a mercenary for example).
Of course, to dodge skills, you’ll need to be aware of what they do. Here’s a common one – Tracking Arrows. We know that skill, we know what it does, and the key here is to dodge that skill. But how? Well, leaving Alfredo or a summon out can be pretty helpful, but on the occasion that you don’t have or can't use any, what do you do? Use terrain, Aerial Recovery… and many more. There are lots of different ways to dodge attacks, from using the simple Dodge for its iframe or distance yourself from the attack range, to countering an enemy in order to fully interrupt the attack, thus “dodging” it completely. I can never be able to cover every skill since there are too much to explain, so it's probably up to anyone to just research about it.
My final words for this section, you may ask? Practice makes perfect. Reading and watching is only a small step into PvP. Once you experience it, apply it, and live it, you will eventually be able to outmatch almost everyone else, even as the one of the frailest classes in the game. Adepts have their own advantages, and that’s their huge burst that can wipe out enemies quickly and their massive AoE capabilities, so embrace those traits to the fullest.
VIII. As High As Honor (Ending remarks)Now, hopefully, the idea of an Adept as a mere “damager” has now diminished, and their role in a party is much better than most people assume them to be. In fact, all classes are damagers, and each has a respective capability to support the party.
This “damager” label has tarnished the name of Adepts for so long that it’s easy to see from public parties on how this damager label is affecting their decisions and picky attitude on the Adept’s demand for nesting. With regard to this, Adepts have the highest population in the Alchemist class, and there aren’t many people who know how their skills work, and end up relieving themselves of the role they were meant to have.
There is almost no other class that can match the burst capability of an Adept. It’s so easy to meet the million damage mark with this class compared to many others, where even those characters need to be well-geared to get that high.
And, as I said, the role of the Adept is not restricted to merely burst damage. Unlike some classes, their purpose is not restricted only to themselves, but for others as well. Never forget that the contributions you can make beside your own damage is replaceable, so do your best to show that you aren't.
And, as I end this guide, I hope many had at least learned something out of this. For those who already know most that was mentioned here, I appreciate your efforts for reading despite how long it was. For those who learned something, I’m glad that you have.
Thanks for reading. Please point out any mistakes if I have any, both for info as well as grammar.
IX. We Do Not Sow (Q&A and Personal Achievements)See the post below!
Edited by Levan, 13 November 2013 - 05:53 PM.